Star Trek Continues is the new live action web-based series from Vic Mignogna, the popular anime voice actor. Mignogna stars as Captain James T. Kirk. The USS Enterprise is in her fourth year of going where no man has gone before warping off right where the original series ended in 1969.
The first episode of this new series of adventures has been completed, made its debut at this year’s Phoenix Comic Con and is now available for viewing online. It has everything the Star Trek TOS fan could want; fantastic sets and props that look like they were lifted right off the Desilu and NBC lot, right down to the EVA suits, Scotty’s favorite hangout in the Jeffries-tube as well as all those uncomfortable 60’s-something chairs on the bridge. Speaking of the bridge, you’d swear they were somehow able to get their hands on the original but this one is even better. No noticeable wear and tear or cardboard feel to it and all the flashing lights, bells and whistles work perfectly.
Mignogna is well cast as Kirk. He is Shatner-like without too many Shatnerisms, just a few to makes us old timers feel at home. Oh, I have to mention, there is even the requisite shirtless Kirk in one scene for this first episode. Fellow anime voice actor Todd Haberkorn stands in as Spock. Doctor McCoy, at least for this first episode, is played by the famous walking wiki of Star Trek, Mr. Larry Nemecek who knows more about the Trek-verse than any living creature should. The real win here for Trek fans is Christopher Doohan, son of James Doohan who portrayed Starfleet engineer Commander Montgomery “Scotty” Scott in every episode of the original series, a guest appearance on Star Trek The Next Generation, and continued as Scotty for seven big screen Trek films. Chris was perfect casting in the role of Scotty. He captures all his Dad’s mannerism’s as chief engineer, his Scottish-brogue and great love for the Enterprise. Sitting at the communications station is Kim Stinger as Uhura, “Mythbusters” star Grant Imahara is excellent as Mr. Sulu and Wyatt Lenhart (Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat) is quite at home as Ensign Pavel Chekov.
This first episode is titled “Pilgrim of Eternity” and it boasts of very significant guest stars, first looks at what is now familiar technology and even an introduction to the position of Ships’s Counselor, something every Next Generation fan should be very familiar with.
“Pilgrim of Eternity” guest stars the wonderful Michael Forrest. He reprises his role of the god Apollo from the TOS second season episode called “Who Mourns for Adonis?” which first aired on American television on September 22, 1967. This new Star Trek Continues episode takes place two years after the events of Kirk’s encounter with Apollo in which the Enterprise destroyed Apollo’s seat of power forcing him to leave Kirk and crew and drift off into the unknown. With this continuation of the story we find out what has transpired in Apollo’s life since leaving his Olympus and how the reunion with Kirk once again sparks hope in Apollo to return to the god business as usual.
As well as meeting up with our old pal Apollo this new episode also introduces fans to Starfleet’s new first ever shipboard position of Counselor wonderfully played by actress Michele Specht, the holodeck gets its embryonic stages in the hands of Mr. Scott, but it has a long way to go before it’s up to TNG specs which could explain why it never made a debut in any of the first six films.
“Pilgrim of Eternity” landed two big guest starring names from the world of science fiction. Jamie Bamber from “Battlestar Galactica” pays a red shirt visit and The Next Generation’s Marina Sirtis is the ship’s computer voice. I hope she has signed on for multiple episodes as it was great hearing her voice aboard the Enterprise once again.
This first episode is a worthy effort on the part of Vic Mignogna, Farragut Films and DracoGen Strategic Investments. They have certainly raised the bar for independent Star Trek episodic film making. Their main competitor and the one that started it all, Star Trek Phase II (New Voyages) has some work to do now that this new kid on the block has shown its first colors, and they are bright. I have little doubt of Phase II’s ability to meet the call as their productions are also second to none. But, nevertheless, look out Mr. Cawley, Mr. Mignogna is on the playing field and he is on his game.
This is a good time to be a Star Trek fan. Hollywood is listening. The internet is maturing and the franchise of 50 years shows no sign of aging. May it Live Long and Prosper indeed.
Check out Episode One at Star Trek Continues – Episodes